Sunburned Hand of the Man

In a wonderfully strange turn of events SHOTM team up with Kieran Hebdan and a few fellows from Vibracathedral Orchestra and come out the chute sounding like Can mixed through a wood chipper. More beat oriented than anything Sunburned has really done in the past and more noisy than anything Hebden has accomplished on his own, Fire Escape melds both artists passion for getting the most out of sound. Hebdan adds his piano to the mix in addition to production touches, which definitely takes the Sunburned sound in a new and interesting direction. The album throbs and quivers along, wavering between noise, dub and electronic impulses with equal fervor. The album's out the first week of October on Smalltown Supersound and features some appropriate artwork from the Boredom's EYE. Grab the limited edition LP while you can.

[MP3] Sunburned Hand of the Man - The Parakeet Beat
[MP3] Sunburned Hand of the Man - What Color Is The Sky In The World You Live In?

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posted by dissensous at 10:27:00 AM 0 comments


True to their name, OM's repetition based song structures and mantra-like vocals attempt to bring disparate unease to a whole other plateau. This time the band have been backed up by Southern Lord, the home of all things dark and unearthly and branded their sound with the production of Steve Albini, the Lord of all things sparse. A wonderful pairing to say the least and the band only benefit from Albini's touches. Pilgrimage is still as intense as anything the band have produced thus far but also adds a tinge of barren queasiness to the mix as if their unholy calmness may devour you at anytime in a hail storm of fury. The title track sets the scene for a full ten minutes before the band kick it up for "Unitive Knowledge of the Godhead" which, though harder, still never wavers in its even temperament. The cycle completes with the Day/Night halves of "Bhima's Theme" and on down to a reprise of the title. Pulsing like a bulldozer in Doppler, Pilgrimage pushes through your brain setting ripples in motion everywhere it touches.

[MP3] OM - Unitive Knowledge of the Godhead

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posted by dissensous at 9:17:00 AM 1 comments


Two bands that utilized the Male/Female vocal formula that became a staple of West Coast acid rock. Sunny harmonies and some real solid covers make both of these well worth checking out.

Wool - Wool
Though scorned by some collectors as being too derivative, the fact is that Wool's eponymous album contains some of the most spot on and exciting covers of the decade. Led by guitarist Ed Wool and featuring the vocals of his sister Claudia Wool,
who masters a pretty impressive Janis Joplin delivery, this album mixed acid rock, funk and soul into a catchy concoction that captured their live experience quite nicely. They also mixed in a few passable originals by Ed that could hold up amongst the album's various styles. An album that holds up time after time as a great listen all the way through.

[MP3] Wool - Combination of the Two
[MP3] Wool - The Boy With the Green Eyes

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Growing Concern - Growing Concern
A great piece of acid tinged psychedelia with a nod to the West Coast's sunny vibes. Bits of fuzz, underpinnings of Organ and vocal contributions from members Bonnie MacDonald and Mary Garstki often
garner this group comparisons to Jefferson Airplane, and the comparison is not without some merit. Unfortunately the band was dropped from the Mainstream label shortly after they signed and recorded the album so as happened so often the album was lost for a good chunk of time until recently. Particularly interesting is the cover of Stephen Stills' "Sit Down, I Think I Love You," but overall the album holds up quite nicely.

[MP3] Growing Concern - Sit Down, I Think I Love You
[MP3] Growing Concern - All I Really Want

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posted by dissensous at 9:15:00 AM 3 comments


Songs of Green Pheasant

Sometimes it can take much more than a cursory listen to pin down an album, sometimes the real pleasures of a release can't fully reveal themselves until the 3rd or even 10th listen. Occasionally when rifling through releases that are much easier to pin down its these gems that I lose track of, sometimes until its long too late to talk about them. Gyllyng Street is one of these hard to pin down albums that after about the 10th listen worms itself inside your head to stay. I'd been a fan of Duncan Sumpner's first offering under the SOGP moniker, but this shies well away from the bedroom psych-folk that nestled that release into my speakers. Instead Sumpner has retained the hushed delivery and delicately psychedelic touches and moved them into a much more atmospheric pop setting. Passing faintly at shades of late 80's and early 90's production styles, Sumpner creates a melancholy masterpiece that would pop nicely onto 4AD a few decades ago. Lush and uncompromisingly forlorn in the best sense of the word, Gyllyng Street is a calm psychedelic whirlpool ducking you under for the relief of tidal breath.

[MP3] Songs of Green Pheasant - Boats
[MP3] Songs of Green Pheasant - The Ballad of Century Paul

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posted by dissensous at 9:47:00 AM 0 comments


Spearheading the new wave of Baltimore, it seems that Dan Deacon is an unlikely candidate for mass acceptance, but the overwhelming adulation heaped upon Spiderman of the Rings would certainly prove otherwise.

Dan Deacon - Crystal Cat 7"
The lead 7" from his second album packs a whollop of electro-spazz goodness and a packaging befitting such goodness. And, as if it seemed the man couldn't crank said weirdness up a notch further, the b-side proves decidedly otherwise. A non-sequitor
funk bucket of blips and the best chorus of the year. Pick this up in all of its clear blue glory!

[MP3] Dan Deacon -Totally Boner Eat Shit

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posted by dissensous at 10:00:00 AM 0 comments


It seems that the classical/electronic combo is becoming its own genre with a strong European bent; but trust me, I'm not going to complain of an over saturation of icily beautiful scores. It's been quite a few years since Oliver Doerell and Stephan Wohrmann's debut put a huge mark on the genre and their follow-up Sekunden seems well worth the wait. A heavy center on the piano, cut through with elements of jazz and organic stabs of electronic gimmickry, Sekunden's temper is calm without becoming stagnant. Puddles of ease give way to snaky passages of restrained skitter and swing so subtle you barely notice it's begun before you're engulfed in it. As the album moves towards a close the band open up wider into cinematic territory, cutting deeper into the emotional depth of the piano and allowing the melody to pan like a lens.

[MP3] Swod - Deer
[MP3] Swod - Paintage

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posted by dissensous at 9:41:00 AM 0 comments


Peter and the Wolf

Despite releasing a record on The Workers Institute, Red Hunter continues his prolific run of home releases and quiet wooden lullabies. It seems that no matter how much tension hangs in a room, one spin from a Peter and the Wolf record brings ease like an autumn rain. His latest, The Ivori Palms sprang from a dream revolving around Dan Eldon and squatting. The record is less refined than Lightness and more polished than the S/T debut; whimsical in all the ways that define Hunter's work and unfettered by anything but honesty. Hunter's voice consistently drifts in like sunlight through the blinds; lost perfectly in the haze that separates Saturday night from Sunday morning. As hunter says "You're not squatting, you're staying at the Ivori Palms" Enjoy.

[MP3] Peter and the Wolf-The Ivori Palms
[MP3] Peter and the Wolf -A Hundred Days

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posted by dissensous at 9:51:00 AM 0 comments



The men of Meneguar return for a second round with a new album, Strangers in our House. In my book Woods always takes the edge over Meneguar in the Deroeck/Earl camp but the new record shows the band really starting to hit a stride. Though the most captivating tracks are the two that showed up on the excellent "Bury A Flower" 7", the band still distill the 90's indie vibe better that many who've been praised much higher for the same. Strangers has an urgent energy that will make you dig a thermal shirt out for one more walk through your college rock heydays. The guitars clang in the right places, the voices strain like they actually give a shit and the drums pound with fevered heat. Head over to Troubleman Unlimited and try to score the nicely packaged vinyl in one of the initial pressings of green or white. You know you can't resist the colored vinyl!

[MP3] Meneguar - Scrap and a Pull
[MP3] Meneguar - Living In The White

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posted by dissensous at 10:01:00 AM 1 comments


The jukebox gives itself over to a heavy dose of psych-folk, with a dash of pop and just a tad of rock. Overall though I'd have to say that the jukebox is hitting a stride of good vibrations due to the wonderfully chill fall weather.

[MP3] Buttons -Happy Mary
A breezy number with a thick chunk of a sing-a-long chorus and bongos galore. This is pop-psych in full swing, a bit of the summer of love and a lot of unavoidable optimism.

[MP3] Robin Scott -The Purple Cadger
With backing from Mighty Baby, Robin Scott is in full psych-folk/rock crossover here. A standout from his now reissued Woman From the Warm Grass, this has a ramble-shamble West Village feel to it despite its British origins. Folk-boogie for a sweet September.

[MP3] Moonkyte -Happy Minstrel
Another cool breeze of folk, this time from the sorely overlooked Moonkyte. Here the band abandon their usually somber tendencies for a more wistful renaissance throwback to the town minstrel. Psych-folk that borders on silly but stays just this side of gloriously fun.

[MP3] The Zipps-Kicks and Chicks
With a delightful Dutch accent and heavy hand on the psychedelic throttle (not to mention a known advocacy for drug use), The Zipps quickly earned a reputation in their home country. A bit of sneer and swagger permeates this ode to youthful rebellion and rightly so. A subtle punker and a damn fine tune as well.

[MP3] Howl The Good -This Moment in the Sun
A blissful bit of folk-rock whose easy charm belies some darker lyricism that has little optimism despite the sunny title. Though, truthfully this contrast actually makes the track stronger. Feeling like some lost Moody Blues outtake, this is a real gem that escaped the age.
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posted by dissensous at 9:01:00 PM 1 comments


Magik Markers

Riding a real Sonic Youth vibe on their latest record, Boss its easy to see why Thurston picked them up for his Ecstatic Peace label. The record is probably the most accessible I've heard from the band, which seems to be a trademark of many an Ecstatic Peace release these days, not that that's a bad thing. A taut 90's influence spreads its arms across this record keeping a love for buzzy guitars and affected (but definitely not effected) vocals up front. Vocalist Elisa Abrogio's voice wavering between bored and sinister for the most part atop the din created by Nolan and Quimby. Still, though the band continues to keep noise as a touchstone there exist some very clean and dare I say delicate moments on this record; with a full on washy acoustic ballad rounding out the end of the record. I have to say I definitely fancy the new Markers, as this may signal the end of the frantic CD-r onslaught and the start of a new era.

[MP3] Magik Markers - Taste
[MP3] Magik Markers - Bad Dream/Hartford's Beat Suite

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posted by dissensous at 10:34:00 AM 2 comments


The Liars break their traditions of form and function and instead deliver an album that hits much harder and heavier than any concept ever could. The first single is no exception and smoothed the delay of the LP version over quite nicely.

Liars - Plaster Casts of Everything 7" The A-Side delivers a crunch and hustle of fuzzed fury that pounds harder than anything since the They Threw Us In a Trench days. The band serve up a two-fer of B-Sides with the CD and the download versions sporting "Mimic the Hurricano"
and the 7" harboring the hazed repetition of "Volcano Police". As usual I'd recommend the wax but I'm just biased like that. Both are worth parting with cash.

[MP3] Liars -Volcano Police

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posted by dissensous at 11:03:00 AM 0 comments

Lone Pigeon

It's been a long road for Gordon Anderson. Anderson was an original member of The Pigeons, later to switch their name to The Beta Band. Prior to their success, Anderson left the band and joined his brother Kenny in the duo King Creosote but he left his marks on their first EP, penning one of their most memorable songs, "Dry The Rain". Anderson's approach to songwriting is certainly shambolic in nature, he has a keen sense for pop hooks but a penchant for experimentation doesn't let them stick around long in his songs. Melodies bob and weave, catching for a moment and then disappearing into the inevitable tangent. Gordon is half Paul McCartney half Skip Spence and the duality makes for and excellent mix of psych-pop that may only, truly make sense to him. Shoozzzmmii, his second "proper" release is probably his most coherent solo record and comes on the heels of his reformation with ex-Betas Robin Jones and John Maclean in The Aliens, whose recent record has garnered much more attention than anything he's done previously. However, Shoozzzmmii paints an excellent picture of a post-Beta Anderson weaving down the foggy path to clear skies.

[MP3] Lone Pigeon -Sallyzimmerman
[MP3] Lone Pigeon -Lonely Vagabond

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posted by dissensous at 10:09:00 AM 0 comments



A bit of a departure from the path the duo started down on A Vintage Burden, this latest release sees the band returning to a more spontaneous recording style with much of the material being worked out live in the studio. Likeness is sparse, with frost forming on the edges of every song. Desolation drives the album like hunger. The vocals are swaddled in echo, much in the style of Christina' recent solo recordings and the lyrics, when they bubble up to the surface, reveal a restless soul. The words were mostly amassed from public domain American popular songs of the late 19th and early 20th century and deconstructed and reorganized by Christina to paint a modern picture. The mix of the sentimental with the bleak further encourages the disparate mood of unease, making this one of the band's most engaging releases in some time. Likeness is out Oct 29th on Kranky.

[MP3] Charalambides -Do You See
[MP3] Charalambides-Walking Through The Graveyard Removed at label's request.

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posted by dissensous at 9:22:00 AM 1 comments



Coming very shortly after the release of their EP Under Giant Trees, Efterklang set out to top the soaring harmonies and sweeping changes that marked that marked both this last EP and their first album Tripper. The music that now comprises Parades is delicately epic, and like its predecessor UGT builds from low rumbling electronic and organic percussion into towering vocals that rival the emotion of some of the best film scores. This album steers much further away from the squiggles that permeated their first album, trading in the modern approach for a much fuller organic sound. The album boasts over 30 guest musicians; a string quartet, a brass quintet and three different choirs all contribute to the glacial epic the band produced in the last 18 months. This album cements the bands status among the top European bands carving out a new age of classical music. Parades sees release October 15th on LEAF.

[MP3] Efterklang -Mirador
[MP3] Efterklang -Horseback Tenors

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posted by dissensous at 10:39:00 AM 0 comments


Two great bands that led a boom of psychedelic outbursts in the UK, only to be barely remembered in the following aftermath. Collectors have now brought these well sought after landmarks back into the light where they belong.

Tomorrow - Tomorrow
Featuring both a pre-Yes Steve Howe and The Pretty Things' Twink, this sole album from Tomorrow was a widely influential piece of psychedelia born out of the scent that birthed Pink Floyd and The Soft Machine. "My White Bicycle" was one
of the first singles to prominently employ the backwards guitar and the rest of the album is built upon the touchstones that flourished throughout the ensuing psychedelic storm that engulfed London in the late 60's. However, the band lasted only this album before breaking up and going there separate ways. Twink to The Pretty Things and then The Pink Fairies, Howe on to Yes and singer Keith West's "Excerpt From a Teenage Opera" would go on to inspire Pete Townsand to write Tommy.

[MP3] Tomorrow - Now Your Time Has Come
[MP3] Tomorrow - My White Bicycle

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July - July
Released on the strength of the single "My Clown/ Dandelion Seeds", which has come to be as sought after as the album, this eponymous album mixed an emerging sense of British psychedelia with eastern touches courtesy of Tony Duhig, later of Jade
Warrior. Duhig's guitar work mixed with songwriting courtesy of Tom Newman forged an album that has now become one of the more collectible pieces of UK psych history. The band also only lasted this one album and broke up shortly after its release with Newman going on to fame as a producer. However in my opinion this album remains the most enjoyable that either was involved in.

[MP3] July - Dandellion Seeds
[MP3] July - To Be Free

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posted by dissensous at 10:28:00 AM 2 comments



Mixing intense, intricate vocals that soar and weave amongst each other with instrumentation that somehow touches on world, dark, rhythmic-heavy psych and eighties soft rock at the time may sound like an overwhelming mess; but Yeasayer pull it off with flawless charm. All Hour Cymbals, the band's debut on Monitor/We Are Free records follows in the wake of the band's "2080/Sunrise" single that has created a bit of a critical ripple of late and for a good reason. The full length more than lives up to the pre-album adulation, feeling at once intense and light, straddling the line evenly between labelmates Indian Jewelry and Peter Gabriel. The record is out October 23rd. I've yet to see the band live but from all accounts they are not to be missed. Check out the band's sessions at daytrotter for another angle and a bonus non-album track.

[MP3] Yeasayer -2080
[MP3] Yeasayer -Wait For The Wintertime

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posted by dissensous at 9:47:00 AM 1 comments


The Animal Collective give a multi-angle look at the first official preview of Strawberry Jam, releasing the "Peacebone" single in 3 formats.
Animal Collective - Peacebone 10"/12"
Focusing on the vinyl releases only, the band queue up a 10 and 12 inch version of the single; giving the 10" an exclusive bonus track while the 12" gets the remix treatment. The bonus track "Safer" is a darker
outtake from the "Jam" sessions and at a sprawling 9+ minutes is quite an added bonus. Rounding out the 12" the keeper is definitely the Black Dice cough syrup deconstruction of the single into a melted concoction that will have you constantly checking your record player to see what's wrong with the speed. The B side serves up a lengthy remix by Pantha Du Prince that seems superfluous unless you really felt the need to dub out for 10 minutes with tiny slices of Animal collective floating in every once in a while.

[MP3] Animal Collective -Safer
[MP3] Animal Collective -Peacebone (Black Dice Remix)

Support the artist. Buy it HERE 10" and HERE 12"
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posted by dissensous at 11:08:00 AM 3 comments

Black Dice

Black Dice are incrementally approaching accessibility. Now don't take that too literally they haven't exactly crafted a disc of sing-a-alongs to take to Grandma's house just yet, but they've taken their damaged circuit tactics and threaded the psychedelic needle in a much more rhythmic direction. Still testing the limits of electronics in a pseudo noise rock setting the band's latest effort Load Blown turns out to be just that, a recognizable effort. The band have shied away from long form fuzzcaked tweakers and damaged, follicle raising squelches and instead found the noise in dub and discovered enough lysergic elements in dance that the genre never saw it coming. Armed with more pedals than you can shake your overpriced PBR at, the band evolve their deconstructionist tactics into collaged beats that, while they may not actually induce dancing will tear up the sides of your headphones for at least a little while.

[MP3] Black Dice-Gore
[MP3] Black Dice -Kokomo

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posted by dissensous at 10:30:00 AM 1 comments


Nels Cline Singers

Proving his virtuosity more with each album, Nels Cline it seems is a busy man and his discography would more than support this. Cutting another release with his ponderously named instrumental group, Nels Cline Singers the man weaves a non-linear path between space blues, jazz and noisy rock. The record never settles into a tone, but is a great listen for the worshipers of the strings. Cline is in top form here and plays a stylistic hopscotch for his own amusement. Draw Breath is at its best when Cline plays it calm though, allowing his skill to tap emotion rather than just feats of strength. The opener is a nice space blues shot into the world of Loren Connors and, as the record winds down, the calm pair "Recognize I" and "II" act as a nice counterpoint to the sweat unleashed on the harder bop and rock takes. Definitely an uneven introduction for those only familiar with his work with Wilco but there seems to be a track to enjoy for everyone.

[MP3] Nels Cline - Caved-in Heart Blues
[MP3] Nels Cline - Recognize I

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posted by dissensous at 10:23:00 AM 1 comments



Stephen Wood's band The Battles (Soft Abuse), in the light of the looming success of the towering fury of Battles (Warp) has regrouped under the moniker Giantess and is readying a new full length out on Soft Abuse October 9th. Continuing in his post-glam hangover songwriting style, Wood has created another pop shamble that matches his last effort wonderfully. Mixing a knack for hooks and a love for the experimental pop bent, Giantess proves to be a change in name only as Wood's spirit and wit remain fully in tact. Somehow each Battles release remains a sleeper album that people finally get into months after their release, but to tell you the truth those are usually my favorite kind of pop albums.

[MP3] Giantess -Saturday Night

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posted by dissensous at 9:49:00 AM 1 comments


So this week perhaps I'll let a legend choose the bands for the feature; let it never be said that there was a DJ with more intimate knowledge of the music world or more love for the variety of sounds available than John Peel. Peel was an early proponent and fan of both of these artists but not everybody has the insight and taste that he did, and thus they were overshadowed by a host of others that filled the psychedelic scene only to be rescued again by the reissue.

Tractor - Tractor
Peel was such a fan of Tractor that he decided to release their second, self-titled album on his own Dandelion Records. The album is a finely crafted mixture of hard acid-fuzzed psych, sunny folk and a bit of blues boogie. The band was signed
on the strength of a home recorded demo that was multi-tracked into a full sound by only two musicians. Following their debut recording on Peel's label the band achieved a modest success in Europe but eventually left little other evidence of their prowess beyond this record and the demo which was issued under their previous name of The Way We Live. This is truly one of the lost classics of the early 70's and an essential listen for those interested in the crossover of acid folk.

[MP3] Tractor - Little Girl In Yellow
[MP3] Tractor - Hope In Flavour

Velvet Fogg - Velvet Fogg
Peel was an early supporter of Velvet Fogg and even contributed liner notes to this debut on Pye Records. The band mixed dark psychedelia with an ear for the emerging progressive turn in rock. The band was remarked most notably for their
album cover that depicted two naked and painted models, causing some controversy at the time. The themes and tone of the album were primarily dark, but mixed in some superb playing from Paul Eastment who replaced original guitarist Tony Iommi, who went on to much greater fame in Black Sabbath. The band did have some modest success with a cover of the Tornados' "Telstar." but eventually lack of record company backing and promotion would spell their demise.

[MP3] Velvet Fogg - Once Among The Trees
[MP3] Velvet Fogg - Within The Night

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posted by dissensous at 9:33:00 AM 2 comments